Lutein is a carotenoid with strong antioxidant properties. Previous studies in adults suggest a beneficial role of lutein on cardiometabolic health. However, it is unknown whether this relation also exists in children; therefore, we aimed to assess the relation between lutein intake at 13 months of age and cardiometabolic outcomes at the age of 6 years. We included 2044 Dutch children participating in a population-based prospective cohort study. Diet was measured at 13 months of age with an FFQ. Lutein intake was standardised for energy and β-carotene intake. Blood pressure, anthropometrics, serum lipids and insulin were measured at the age of 6 years. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry was performed to measure total and regional fat and lean mass. A continuous cardiometabolic risk factor score was created, including the components body fat percentage, blood pressure, insulin, HDL-cholesterol and TAG. Age- and sex-specific standard deviation scores were created for all outcomes. Multivariable linear regression was performed, including socio-demographic and lifestyle variables. Median (energy-standardised) lutein intake was 1317 mcg/d (95 % range 87, 6069 mcg/d). There were no consistent associations between lutein intake at 13 months and anthropometrics and body composition measures at 6 years of age. In addition, lutein intake was not associated with a continuous cardiometabolic risk factor score, nor was it associated with any of the individual components of the cardiometabolic risk factor score. Results from this large population-based prospective cohort study do not support the hypothesis that lutein intake early in life has a beneficial role for later cardiometabolic health.

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British Journal of Nutrition
Department of Pediatrics

Leermakers, L., Kiefte-de Jong, J., Hofman, A., Jaddoe, V., & Franco, O. (2015). Lutein intake at the age of 1 year and cardiometabolic health at the age of 6 years: The Generation R Study. British Journal of Nutrition, 114(6), 970–978. doi:10.1017/S0007114515002779